Press photosThird Age ProjectPress clippingsAnd Then They Came For MeSouth London, Various Schools, 2010

Baby Come Home

Baby Come Home is a Chinese charity founded just over 10 years ago.  It exists to try to reunite kidnapped Chinese children with their families.

The problem of child kidnap is a very grave one in China, and it has developed into a big business.  Because of the one child policy, many families have found themselves lacking the heir they need to carry on the family name, which is extremely important in Chinese culture.  Without the possibility of having another baby themselves, some families resort to illegally buying kidnapped children and passing them off as their own.  Obviously this is strictly against Chinese law, but it can be very difficult to discover that a child is a kidnap victim and also nigh on impossible for families to trace their stolen children in China’s vast continent.

The devastation and heartbreak that such trafficking wreaks on a family scarcely needs description.

Beyond the constant agony of thinking and wondering about the missing child, there are the practical problems as the family spends time and resources searching for their missing family member.  If a parent gives up their job to search, their income may no longer be enough to support the family.  In addition, the emotional and financial stress may damage the marriage irreparably.

The terror and misery the child suffers can only be imagined.  Sometimes they end up in families where they are mistreated or treated as child labourers, lacking the love and affection that they knew before.

Baby Come Home started out on a very small scale.  Gradually people learned of the assistance they could receive and the numbers seeking help grew.  Eventually a website was developed and the staff increased.  Now there is even a DNA base with free DNA testing for parents with missing children. Financial support is incredibly important to these parents, as in most cases they are extremely poor, live in rural areas, and are not well educated.

In some cases kidnapped children are abandoned and eventually fall into the care of Chinese orphanages from where they may be adopted and sent abroad to loving families who are unaware that they were in fact stolen from their parents.

We would appeal to any parents abroad who have adopted Chinese children to consider giving DNA samples to Baby Come Home.  The aim of this is in no way to remove the children from the adoptive parents and reunite them with those in China.  It is simply to give the original parents in China peace of mind and an end to their heartbreak, so that they can know finally what has become of their children.  It also gives the children closure to know the truth of their origins and to find that their own biological parents really did love them and did not willingly abandon them.   In most cases, the Chinese parents are impoverished, perhaps even peasants, and know they cannot offer the child anything like as good a life and as many opportunities as the new parents.  They do not consider trying to take their children back and are happy to know that their child is safe, well, and loved and in an environment which will give them the best chance in life.  To let these parents have this knowledge is a gift of love and understanding to them.  We would appeal to such adoptive families to consider doing this for both the parents’ and children’s sake.

Anyone who would like to be put in touch with Baby Come Home can do so through the Confucius Better World Foundation.  We personally know the founder and the photos show James being awarded the honorary title of Baby Come Home volunteer during a meeting with her in Beijing.